Guilford County Child Welfare Services and the Division of Social Services as a whole are still reeling from the giant scandal earlier this year that caused the State of North Carolina to intervene and demand a corrective course of action.
Three months ago, Guilford County implemented the plan to make things right and, on Friday, Oct. 27, released a list of improvements made in the last three months.
Along with that backward looking review of the Corrective Action Plan, the county also vowed to keep improving.
Over the next 90 days, county officials stated in a press release, “the county will continue its work to address the areas of safety and assessment planning, permanency, and placement stability.”
One way the county will do that is by hiring an outside vendor “to develop and conduct foster parent interviews and annual surveys moving forward to identify opportunities to improve social work practice and relationships with foster parents.”
That same vendor will also develop a “kinship survey” meant to help better understand any unique experiences with regard to the process.
Guilford County also pledges to continue to engage in meetings to establish better lines of communication between DSS judges, Guilford County Health and Human Services Department program managers and directors, county attorneys, parent attorneys, attorney advocates, courtroom clerks and others who play a role in the protection and welfare of children in the county’s care.
Here are some other expected changes in the coming 90 days:
• Create and implement a Court Project: identify and contact representative partners, meet with partners and conduct meetings.
• Complete and implement dashboards and Out of Home Family Service Agreements monitoring tools.
• Continued meetings with staff on the Corrective Action Plan to hear and receive feedback.
• Continued internal review of cases and creation of identified training.
If anyone wants more information – or simply wishes to keep up to date on the county’s implementation of its action plan, they can follow the developments by visiting the Guilford County DSS webpage.